Mumbai Dabbawalas have scaled up efforts with help from Maharashtra DGP and others to start the Mumbai Roti Bank.
Mumbai: The Dabbawalas of Mumbai have joined hands with former Maharashtra DGP D Sivanandan to provide food to the needy through Mumbai Roti Bank.
Known for their deft management of tiffin service across the metropolitan, the Dabbawalas of Mumbai have also been taking time out of their job and collecting excess food from hotels and functions to distribute them to the needy, for the last two years.
Now, the Mumbai Dabbawala Association has scaled up their efforts with the assistance of Sivanandan, Nitin Khanapurkar and Sweta Mangal and together they have started the Mumbai Roti Bank.
"Dabbawalas have already been doing it in a small way by collecting excess food from the people and delivering it to the needy, so we have come and joined them actually and created a new NGO called Mumbai Roti Bank complete with a website for it- Rotibankindia.org," Sivanandan said.
Through the website, people can contact them to give Mumbai Roti Bank their excess food and the NGO's van can pick up the food from their doorstep.
"We are catering to South and Central Mumbai as of now, as we have only one vehicle currently. After two more come, we'll expand to other parts of Mumbai," Sivanandan said, and added, "We have a way of finding out whether the food is stale or not. We have done 'Hunger mapping' to find where food is needed. We also have refrigeration to retain the food."
Subhash Talekar, the spokesperson of Mumbai Dabbalawalas Association, said, "We have been providing food to 500 needy people every day from Monday to Friday but with help of new facilities of Mumbai Roti Bank, we will be able to serve at least 1000 people".
The NGO primarily targets hospitals where people come from all over the country but don't have sufficient money or resources.